The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi granted approval to several initiatives. They are
- Allocation of Additional Foodgrains under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PM-GKAY) till November 2021
- Merger of Central Railside Warehouse Company Limited (CRWC) with Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC)
- Foreign Country Agreement between India and Saint Vincent and The Grenadines for Exchange of Information and Assistance in Collection of taxes.
Allocation of Additional Foodgrain under PM-GKAY 2021
The cabinet approved the allocation of additional foodgrains under PM-GKAY 2021 (Phase-IV) for another 5 months i.e July to November, 2021.
i.The total estimated expenditure of the additional allocation – INR 67, 266.44 crore will be borne completely by the Central Government.
- Out of INR 67, 266.66 crore – the estimated food subsidy cost is INR 64, 031 crore, while INR 3,234.85 crore is for transportation & handling and Fair Price Shop (FPS) dealers’ margins.
ii.Under PM-GKAY, each person will get 5 kg of foodgrains per month for free of cost. Around 81.35 crore people are expected to benefit from the scheme, which includes beneficiaries under National Food Security Act (NFSA) (Antyodaya Anna Yojana and Priority Households) including those covered under Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) will be benefitted.
iii.The estimated expenditure of PM-GKAY 2021 implemented during the months of May-June, 2021 stood at INR 26, 602 crore.
PM-GKAY was announced in 2020 to ensure food security of poor/vulnerable beneficiaries/households who were affected due to economic disruptions caused by COVID-19.
Merger of CRWC with CWC
The Cabinet has given approval to merge and transfer all assets, liabilities, rights and obligations of ‘Central Railside Warehouse Company Limited (CRWC)’, a Mini-Ratna Category-II Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSE) incorporated under Companies Act, 1956 with its holding enterprise ‘Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC)’.
- The merger will unify similar functions of both the companies (i.e. warehousing, handling, transportation) to promote efficiency, transparency, accountability, ensure financial savings and use railway siding for new warehousing capacities.
- The merger is expected to be completed within 8 months of the date of decision.
i.Due to the merger, the management expenditure of Railside Warehouse Complexes (RWCs) is expected to come down by INR 5 crore.
ii.The merger will facilitate the setting up of around 50 Railside warehouses near goods-shed locations, which will generate employment opportunities equivalent to 36,500 man days for skilled workers and 9,12,500 man days for unskilled workers.
iii.A separate Division with the name ‘RWC Division’ will be created by CWC for handling operations and marketing of RWCs.
Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC)
It is a Mini-Ratna Category-I CPSE set up in 1957 to provide for incorporation and regulation of Warehousing Corporation for the purpose of warehousing of agricultural produce and other commodities notified by the Government of India.
- CWC is a profit making PSE, its authorized capital is INR 100 crore and paid up capital is INR 68.02 crore.
- CWC created CRWC in 2007 to plan, develop, promote, acquire and operate Railside Warehousing Complexes/Terminals/Multimodal Logistics Hubs on land leased/acquired from Railways.
- CWC is the sole shareholder of CRWC. CRWC’s net worth (as on 31st March, 2020) stood at INR 137.94 crore.
Agreement between India & Saint Vincent and the Grenadines on Taxes
The cabinet has approved the agreement signed between India and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines for the Exchange of Information and Assistance in Collection with respect to Taxes.
- It is the 1st agreement on Taxes between the two countries.
- The agreement proposes to facilitate exchange of information between the two countries and to provide assistance to each other in collection of tax claims.
- The agreement also contains tax examination abroad provisions which provide that a country may allow representatives of the other country to enter its territory (to the extent permitted under its domestic laws) to interview individuals and examine records for tax purposes.
i.Under the agreement, banks & financial institutions of two countries can share information regarding the legal and beneficial ownership.
ii.It will facilitate the assistance in collection of tax claims between the 2 countries.
iii.It will also help India to fight offshore tax evasion and tax avoidance practices which lead to generation of unaccounted black money.
About Central Railside Warehouse Company Limited (CRWC)
MD – Narinder Kumar Grover
Head Office – New Delhi
About Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC)
MD – Arun Kumar Shrivastava
Head Office – New Delhi
About Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Prime Minister – Ralph Gonsalves
Capital – Kingstown
Currency – Eastern Caribbean Dollar (XCD)